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Doug Ford's advisor reveals his vision of the healthcare system today



A report that will show how the Ontario Premier Doug Ford reform in the provincial health care system says the system needs to add more beds than a solution to hospital overcrowding, CBC News has learned

The first report on Thursday morning will be provided by the Ford Board for Health Care Improvement, a group of 11 senior healthcare administrators.

The Council has the power to advise Ford and Health Minister Christine Elliott on reducing hospital waiting times, ending the so-called "corridor" and making long-term structural changes in the healthcare system.

This is the safe rate the Ford government will adopt. The Council is chaired by Dr Rueben Devlin, Humber River Hospital's long-term manager, former President of Ontario's Progressive Conservative Party, and Ford. He was appointed on the day the Ford government adopted its mandate last June.

"He comes up with very useful insights," Elliot said on Wednesday. She refused to say what the Devlin report would go beyond describing it as "initial information about what he has heard so far."

Government sources report in the CBC News report, which looks at the causes of hospital overcrowding and what can be done.

The report does not support a large increase in the number of acute care beds, but emphasizes the importance of home care and community care according to the sources who talked about the condition of anonymity.

Dr Rueben Devlin is the former Humber River Hospital manager, former Ontario PC party president and close Ford confidant. He was appointed Prime Minister's Special Adviser on Health care on the day Ford gained power. (Algonquin College / Twitter)

The report also states that people too often go to hospitals in conditions that could be treated elsewhere. It will recognize the shortcomings of the healthcare system, including the fact that it is not always effective and it is too difficult for people to navigate.

Specific recommendations for changes will not be made until the Council's second report to be received in the spring is delivered.

However, Devlin has already publicly given strong advice on where he is guiding his reform recommendations.

"We know there are problems with the healthcare system, but how do we solve it?" Devlin told spectators at Algonquin College in late November. "People say," You can't make the system better and improve quality and still save money. " It is not true."

The biggest immediate challenge facing the Devlin group – and the Ford government – is the problem of hospital overcrowding.

Devlin is a strong advocate of using better technologies to improve the healthcare system. (Martin Trainor / CBC)

The employment rate is not sustainable, Devlin said. He referred to the Ministry of Health's forecasts of hospital capacity, suggesting that by the year 2028 8,000 hospital beds would be needed in the province, but only 1700 were planned.

"Are we planning to build 6,300 patient beds with associated capital costs and running costs, or will we provide other types of healthcare?" Devlins asked in his November speech.

"We need to look at where patients can be treated. If we tackle some of the hallmark medical problems, how do we get patients to go to the primary care area rather than show them in the emergency department?"

Devlin also questions whether it would be wise to provide the 41,000 additional long-term care facilities required by the Ministry of Health's projects to meet demand.

"Will we really institutionalize our older people?" November November Devlins described the long-term care home as the ultimate option. "We want to provide care in society, at home, and at the place where they can get it, outside the institutions."

Several sources point out to CBC News that Ford's government plans to dismantle provincial local health integration networks (LHIN) as part of the imminent health reforms. (Shoutterstock / Shutterstock)

Devlin wants to redesign service delivery to focus on the patient and family

"We get a lot of feedback that navigation in the system is complicated," he said. "If we have to go to a family member for long-term care, it's hard. If I have to take a beloved with cancer care, it's hard."

Devlin has a vision of what he calls the Team Ontario Health System. "No matter where you are, we will take care of you. One number to call, one website that goes into the system and will make it better for you."

Another important theme for Devlin's approach is the use of technology to improve the system. He expects the hospital's emergency department to receive all of the patient's medical history by pulling it on the Ontario Hospital Insurance Plan (OHIP).

He depicts a provincial digital health team center, and he distributes virtual care, such as a patient, to check his blood pressure at home and send the result to a doctor.

Some healthcare organizations (HMO) in the US provide more than half of their care, Devlin told Algonquin College audience.

Ford promises to listen to doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers when he moves to the system. "Nothing is worse than the bunch of politicians who tell the frontline people whether it is education or health care, how to do their job," said Ford. (Samantha Craggs / CBC)

Devlin wants a "Ministry of Health and an organizational structure that is skillful and effective." He said it would require a "little organizational change".

He made a statement before CBC News reported that, according to several sources, Ford's government plans to separate the provincial local health integration networks (LHIN).

He said he had challenged the following team: "What is the future of healthcare? How will we provide health care from 20 to 30 years old?"

On Wednesday at a press conference, Ford said his government was focusing on hearing doctors, nurses, and other frontal health workers.

"We are asking for their ideas and our task is to review these ideas and then implement these ideas," Ford announced at the Toronto Center for Addiction and Mental Health.

"Nothing is worse than the bunch of politicians who tell the front people whether it is education, or health care, how to do their job when they do it every day."


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